Tickets for the upcoming EliteXC show on May 31st go on sale to the public on Friday, April 18th at 10am through Ticketmaster. MMA on Tap has learned that a pre-sale of tickets started Wednesday morning. The pre-sale can also be purchased through the Ticketmaster website. The code is “Kimbo” for access to the pre-sale.
This EliteXC show will be broadcast live on CBS-TV, the first live MMA event on broadcast television in the United States. The main event features internet fighting sensation Kimbo Slice against Pride veteran James Thompson. EliteXC and CBS today confirmed the main card fights scheduled to be broadcast.
* Kimbo Slice vs. James “Colossus” Thompson (Heavyweights)
* “Ruthless” Robbie Lawler vs. Scott “Hands of Steel” Smith (for EliteXC Middleweight title)
* Gina “Conviction” Carano vs. Kaitlin Young (140 lb. weight class)
* Phil Baroni vs. Murilo “Ninja” Rua (Middleweights)
* Brett “The Grim” Rogers vs. Jon Murphy (Heavyweights)
Photo by Esther Lin/EliteXC.
EliteXC heavyweight sensation Kevin “Kimbo Slice” Ferguson will reportedly headline the organization’s first prime-time televised event on CBS against James Thompson on May 31st at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey.
The news comes from NBC Sports’ Mike Chiappetta. A source close to one of the fighters confirmed that EliteXC would officially announce the fight later this week.
Ferguson picked up the biggest win of his professional career so far in February, knocking out longtime veteran brawler David “Tank” Abbott at EliteXC: Street Certified. The Bas Rutten-trained fighter forced Bo Cantrell to tap out from strikes in just nineteen seconds in his pro debut last November.
The Miami street fighting legend quickly rose to fame after many of his underground fights became available for viewing on the internet.
Thompson, a veteran of PRIDE and Cage Rage, will easily be Slice’s biggest test to date despite losing six out of his last eight fights. Thompson was recently knocked out by heavyweight prospect Brett Rogers in February. The England native’s last win came over Don Frye in April of last year.
“EliteXC and CBS Saturday Night Fights” will also feature an EliteXC middleweight title fight between champion Robbie Lawler and challenger Scott Smith in a bout that will likely be a sure-fire war on the feet. Female star Gina Carano will also return to action against Kaitlyn Young.
Touch of gloves to our friends at MMA Junkie for the find.
MMA on Tap has learned that the father of former UFC middleweight champion Rich Franklin passed away yesterday due to a heart attack. All of us here would like to send our thoughts and prayers to Rich’s family and friends during this difficult time.
Diabate to Train with Team Quest
Cyrille “Snake” Diabate has announced that he will be spending some time in the United States to train with Dan Henderson and the rest of Team Quest’s Temecula, California franchise in preparation for his first fight on American soil.
Diabate is looking to improve his wrestling skills and takedown defense during his stay:
“This is exactly the kind of opportunity I need,” says Diabate. “America is where everything is happening right now, both fighting and training-wise. In the past I haven’t had to worry
about top level wrestlers trying to take me down. But now [with upcoming fights in American promotions], things will change.”
If Diabate is looking to improve his wrestling ten-fold, he certainly picked the right place…
Grove Fought High for First Six Fights
In a recent interview with Cage Potato, Kendall Grove admitted that he fought in his first six professional bouts high off of marijuana:
See, marijuana is a touchy subject. I’m a rock star — I’ve been smoking weed since I was in the 6th grade, I can openly say that. But I’m also clean when I fight. I cut that shit out — I’m a professional. Don’t get me wrong, my first six fights, I fought high, I fought stoned. But when you get to this level, you have to take responsibility. It’s your job. I stop doing that stuff three months out.
Thompson-Rogers, “Krazy Horse” Added to EliteXC Feb Card
ProElite’s Sam Caplan is reporting that a heavyweight bout between James Thompson and Brett Rogers has been added to the undercard of EliteXC’s next event on February 16th at the United Bank Arena in Miami, Florida.
Thompson will be making his EliteXC debut at the event. He was knocked out by Neil Grove in just 10 seconds at Cage Rage 22 in July. Rogers is coming off of a submission win over Ralph Kelly at EliteXC: Renegade.
Charles “Krazy Horse” Bennett will also apparently compete on the undercard as well. Bennett has not fought since submitting Donnie Martinez with a rear naked choke at a KOTC event in October.
Eric Bradley of Team Takedown fame is expected to sign with EliteXC according to Sam Caplan. Rick Roufus has not been cleared by the California State Athletic Commission and will not fight Mark Kerr at WCO: The Return. Roufus has been replaced by Kauai Kupihea.
News and Notes
- ProElite.com will be streaming Randy Couture’s press conference live at 4:30 PM EST.
- A roundup of coverage of last night’s TUF episode:
UFC: The Ultimate Fighter Serra vs Hughes - Episode Six Recap; Matt Hughes’ Blog - Week Six
Sherdog: Sherdog.com’s Guide to TUF 6
The Fight Network: Controversy Strikes TUF 6
Inside Fighting: Paul Georgieff; Tommy Speer
Chicago Sun-Times: John Kolosci’s TUF diary, Episode 6
OC Register: Mac Danzig’s Ultimate Fighter Blog (Episode 6)
MMA Junkie: “The Ultimate Fighter: Team Hughes vs. Team Serra” — Episode No. 6 Recap
UFC Mania: Ultimate Fighter 6: Episode 6 recap and discussion
UFC Daily: The Ultimate Fighter Season 6: Episode 6 Recap
Five Ounces of Pain: TUF 6: Episode 6 Thoughts/Recap
- Strikeforce originally stated that two-minute rounds would be used during their inaugural middleweight tournament next month but the California State Athletic Commission has stepped in and changed the bout duration to five full minutes.
- Some other numbers from UFC 79…
Official attendance - 16,054
Total live gate - $2,519,850
- Sean Salmon has revealed through MMA Junkie that he will be fighting at Strikeforce next month against an opponent yet to be determined and at the next HDNet Fights event on December 15th against Jason “Mayhem” Miller:
Now, onto upcoming fights (or what I am permitted to say, anyway): I am “for sure” fighting on the Strikeforce card on Nov. 16. However, Eugene Jackson (my original opponent) is injured and can’t fight. I know Cung Le’s opponent has fallen through, and I would like nothing more than to fight him. Here we go again:
Either way, I have been assured that I am on this card, but I’m most likely an “alternate bout” to the tournament. I can’t complain about that, as I would be honored to fight anyone in that four-man field.
Next up, I have been given permission to announce that I will be fighting Jason “Mayhem” Miller on the Dec. 15 HDNet Fights card.
- Last night Brian Knapp of The Fight Network announced that James Thompson and Jon Murphy were set to clash at EliteXC: Renegade on November 10th. However Sam Caplan and Five Ounces of Pain are reporting that the fight is not signed and Murphy was never even approached about a potential fight against Thompson:
When contacted by Five Ounces of Pain, Murphy indicated that no one with EliteXC has contacted him about the possibility of fighting Thompson. He went on to add that he’s currently suffering from a serious shoulder injury and does not believe he’d be able to take the match even if it is offered.
Murphy went on to indicate that a match with Thompson is one he’d welcome in the future and that he hopes it’s a bout available to him once he’s healthy again.
- Herb Dean recently sat down for an interview with The Winnipeg Sun and discussed his controversial decision to stop the Frank Mir-Tim Sylvia heavyweight title bout at UFC 48 after Sylvia suffered a broken arm:
That experience was never more evident back in 2004, when Dean was the referee in UFC 48. In the heavyweight championship fight between Tim Sylvia and Frank Mir, Sylvia broke his arm in the first round. Dean, understanding the headstrong mentality of some of the fighters, saw this and jumped in right away, stopping the fight. He knew if he didn’t, Sylvia would have kept going and possibly suffered more damage.
“He was upset, the crowd was upset,” Dean remembers, “but it turns out they caught in on video, they had a good angle of it, so I was vindicated. For a minute I was wondering where I was going to hide. I was looking for a good hiding spot or a large police officer.
“It’s happened more than once, but that was my defining match as a referee.”
News and Notes
- Our rumors section has been updated once again…
- Remember to cast your vote on our latest poll: Rock the Vote - Favorite UFC 73 Fight
- MMA on Tap would like to congratulate UFC Junkie’s Eric “Performify” Foster on being hired as a columnist for Fight! Magazine.
- For those of you that haven’t already heard, Wesley “Cabbage” Correira has been forced to withdraw from his scheduled bout with James Thompson at Cage Rage 22 this Saturday after suffering a broken ankle during a recent training session. Cage Rage has also announced that Correira will be replaced by Kimo Leopoldo in the bout.
- Full Contact Fighter is reporting that former UFC Heavyweight Champion Ricco Rodriguez has been forced to withdraw from his scheduled bout against Ron Waterman at HCF: Unfinished Business on July 21 because he has been denied admittance into the country of Canada:
Hardcore Championship Fighting promoter, Keith Crawford, informed FCF this afternoon that Ricco Rodriguez will not fight Ron Waterman on the July 21st, “Unfinished Business” card, in Edmonton, Alberta, as had been advertised. The fight was to be the card’s main event, which will take place at the River Cree Resort and Casino in Alberta’s capital city. According to Crawford, Canadian authorities have denied Rodriguez entrance into the country.
“Mr. Rodriguez’s bond to get into Canada has been revoked due to recent situations.” said Crawford, which was the extent to which he cared to comment. As of last week, Crawford had maintained in correspondence with FCF that he believed all American fighters that were scheduled to compete on the card would be granted entry into Canada.
Rodriguez’s lawyer and agent, James C. Gallo, told FCF this afternoon that “I’m not an expert in Canadian law, but I’m unaware of any reason as to why Rodriguez would be precluded from leaving the U.S. to enter Canada.”
- The Fight Network is reporting that Mirko Cro Cop has hired a talented group to be used as sparring partners in preparation for Cro Cop’s upcoming bout against Cheick Kongo at UFC 75. Sergei Kharitonov, Ricco Rodriguez and Zelg Galesic will all be participating in Cro Cop’s training camp.
- Randy Couture and Quinton Jackson fell short of their bid to become the first mixed martial artist to receive an ESPY for Fighter of the Year as Floyd Mayweather Jr took home the honor.
- Gracie Fighter is stating that Nick Diaz has been released of his contract with PRIDE and Zuffa because of his ties with Elite XC:
We will be running a series on a seldom seen look at the behind the scenes workings that ultimately lead to the ouster of Nick Diaz from the new Pride organization. In our opinion this ouster had everything to do with Nick’s participation in the EliteXC organization and nothing to do with Zuffa’s technical grounds. Everyday this week we will post corresponding emails and let you the reader be the ultimate judge.
MMA Weekly: This Thing is a Unification Bout
NBC Sports: Sport, not savagery
CBS Sportsline: A look ahead at UFC championship picture
Fight Opinion: Thursday trash talk: Trigg and Toughman
Bloody Elbow: California and Oversaturation
411 Mania: Where Do The UFC 73 Fighters Go From Here
Wesley “Cabbage” Correira has been forced to withdraw from his scheduled bout with James Thompson at Cage Rage 22 this Saturday after suffering a broken ankle during a recent training session.
Cage Rage has also announced that Correira will be replaced by Kimo Leopoldo in the bout. Leopoldo has not fought since October of 2006 when he was stopped by Wes Sims in the first round of their bout at Extreme Wars 5.